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18

Chardonnay

A tight, minerally wine with classic Hamilton Russell Vineyards length and complexity. Unusually prominent pear and lime fruit aromas and flavours are brought beautifully into focus by a tight line of bright natural acid and a long, dry minerality. An elegant, yet textured and intense wine with a strong personality of both place and vintage.

Select Vintage:

Latest vintage available online via Port2Port.

Soil:

Low-vigour, stony, clay-rich, shale-derived soil

Alcohol:

13.20%

Acid:

5.96 g/l

pH:

3.29

Residual Sugar:

1.60 g/l


Barrel Fermentation:

95% 228 liter French Oak Barrels

Foudre:

5%


Barrel Ageing:

9 Months in 228 liter French Oak Barrels and Foudre

1st fill:

29%

2nd fill:

41%

3rd fill:

29%

4th fill:

1%


Tight Grain:

100%

Blonde Toast:

45%

Medium Toast:

44%

Medium Long Toast:

11%


French Coopers:

100% Francois Freres


Yield:

3.20 tons/ha, 22.37 hl/ha

Production:

4090 cases of 12 bottles equivalent


Release date – December 2018
Growing Season

After the early and short 2015 and 2016 harvests, 2018, like 2017 was back to our usual timing, beginning at the end of the first week of February, but (a longer harvest) finishing at the end of the first week of March.  Budding was even and successful, with higher than usual early Spring temperatures, but an unusually wet November and a cool December affected flowering and fruit-set, resulting in particularly low yields – far lower than our already low yields. The berries were smaller and the bunches were lighter, but the resulting wines were deeper, fuller and more structured.  December and January were drier than average, making for relatively easy and successful disease control organically, with February only very slightly wetter than our long term average. A warmer than average February, combined with the very low yields and small berries did however contribute to the riper more opulent style of 2018 compared to 2017.  One of the features of 2018 was fairly variable ripening within individual vineyards, and within individual bunches. Picking on taste, combined with analysis, and picking particular areas within individual vineyards at different times, was particularly important in 2018. This required a high level of vigilance and very close teamwork between cellar and vineyard, both of which were carried out with great success. 2018 was an excellent vintage for us.

94+ Points - Greg Sherwood MW

95 Greg Sherwood MW

Chatting to Anthony before tasting the 2018, he warned there might still be a hint of reduction on this young white wine. But to be honest, I found it very fresh, pure and delightfully fragrant, though perhaps aromatically a little more restrained and mineral at the moment, showing more yellow citrus, lemon pastille and wet chalk rather than struck match reduction. There is still a very subtle juvenile lick of salted caramel and vanilla spice from the oak barrel ageing, but on the palate, this is where the real pedigree of this wine is revealed. An ultra tight, pinpoint textural finesse, plenty of core energy and a classically restrained Burgundian dry lemon and limestone finish. Wonderfully intense and focused but simultaneously a suave and supremely balanced Chardonnay from the Walker Bay. Give this wine another 6 months in bottle after release and then indulge at will.